Raw materials

Stringent selection of raw materials

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The quality of leathers, meticulously selected at tanneries, plays a determining role in the comfort, lifespan and appearance of Paraboot shoes.

77% of our raw materials are from France; they are either French materials or processed in France. With the exception of Cordovan Leather from America, the other leather merchants used are all in Europe. They all comply with the requirements of the various applicable European legislation in force.

We’ve been working with the same tanners for several generations, maintaining special relationships based on mutual trust with these friendly-sized companies. Our suppliers are amongst the most prestigious tanneries in France; they also supply the other big names in shoes and luxury leather goods.

The importance of a fine skin

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Elasticity, strength, appearance, and more… skins are chosen according to their "hand feel" and the desired effect.
The most noble leather is calfskin, so it's used to make the top of the shoe, or 'upper'. The final quality of the shoe depends on the way the different pieces of leather forming it are cut. The art of cutting consists in avoiding defects, going with the "stretch" of the leather (the direction in which it pulls), and keeping waste to a minimum. The cutter is said to "read" the skin. It’s all done by sight and feel...

Each skin used is natural (no artificial finishing layer is applied to hide defects). That’s why you’ll sometimes find the presence of slight wrinkles or minor imperfections – and why two pairs of shoes will never be exactly identical.
Your Paraboot shoes are unique items!

The wear of the shoe will depend on the choice of a suitable leather. For more dressy models, we favour the transparency and finesse of the grain, such as box-calf. For our so-called “outdoor” models with a rubber sole, we favour highly resistant, less smooth-looking leathers. We also use velvet calf, grained calfskin, nubuck, vernis and cordovan.

Welts

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Our welts need to be flexible and strong so that they don’t bend out of shape.

They are cut in vegetable-tanned, full-grain butt according to very precise thicknesses and widths. They are used to fix the upper to the sole.

Whether the welt is flat, smooth, decorated, reed, raised, grooved, two-tone, printed, etc. will play a major part in the style of your pair of shoes.

The rubber for our soles

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Our inserts, heels and soles are always made using the same blends and vulcanisation processes.

This enables the rubber to develop its best physical and mechanical properties – namely comfort, flexibility and wear-resistance; although the latter also depends to a great extent on the way the shoes are used by the person wearing them.

Our rubber blends are from France and vulcanised using the presses at our Tullins-Fures plant.

Travel to the heart of our materials by taking a look at our glossary !

Did you know

Paraboots never stop shining!

Selected for its natural sheen, box-calf is traditionally used for smart dress shoes. This leather is renowned for being very firm, so some people may have to wear the shoes in!